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SaberSphere 12/27: We're Back!

Who needs Glenn anyway? Oh, what's that? Baseball Info Solutions does? Whatever...

Brad White

Since this used to be Glenn's thing, it is fitting that we start off with an article of his over at The Hardball Times: The myth of going for broke

There are times when teams build new stadiums or sign new TV deals and use these cash inflows to invest in premium talent that could put their organization over the top. Some teams develop a deep farm system for years, investing in young talent that they hope to some day cash in on. Other teams get a taste at success by reaching the playoffs or coming close and spend big the next offseason in hopes of reaching that next step.

This is a couple days old, but still very relevant. Rany Jazayerli over at Rany on the Royals talks about the moral hazards of being both a fan and analyst: Myers, Moral Hazard, and Moving On

If you were waiting for my actual analysis of the Myers/Shields trade, I wrote this for Grantland just hours after the deal was consummated. Perhaps it would have been better if I had not written angry. I was not kind to the Royals.

Jonah Birenbaum at Baseball Prospectus wonder is the Blue Jays should be counting on Jose Bautista to recover fully from his injury: Could Jose Bautista Be Damaged Goods?

Over the past few weeks, Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos has orchestrated an organizational overhaul of Pygmalion proportions. Essentially, he’s turned a perennial non-threat in the American League East into the division’s foremost...uh, well the baseball equivalent of Audrey Hepburn. You know, she played Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady.

Keith Law at writes about his take on the Joel Hanrahan trade($): Hanrahan a minor upgrade at a minor cost

The Pittsburgh Pirates completed a trade with the Boston Red Sox on Wednesday featuring closer Joel Hanrahan, but they really should have moved Hanrahan sooner, preferably last offseason, because a Proven Closer™ is a luxury on a below-.500 club and will usually have more value in trade than he can deliver to a bad team over 70 innings.

John Sickels looks at the prospects involved in the Hanrahan trade over at Minor League Ball: Pirates Trade Joel Hanrahan to Red Sox: Prospects Involved

The Pittsburgh Pirates traded closer Joel Hanrahan and infield prospect Brock Holt to the Boston Red Sox today, receiving outfielder Jerry Sands, reliever Mark Melancon, pitching prospect Stolmy Pimentel, and infield prospect Ivan DeJesus in exchange. Here is a look at the prospects involved.

Rob Neyer of Baseball Nation take a look at some of the worst baseball writing of 2012: The Year in Worst: Baseball Writing

There's nothing everybody loves more than BEST OF lists. And here at Baseball Nation, we've got plenty of them. But you know whose feelings always get hurt, this time of the year? Poor forgotten WORST OF. So in the spirit of the holidays and good cheer and beginning the New Year with grace, it's time to throw a little love toward the worst of something. But the worst of ... what?

Jeff Sullivan looks at strikeout and walk park factors over at Fangraphs: Walk and Strikeout Factors, 2010-2012

One of the very most important principles in the field of baseball analysis is the concept of park factors — having an understanding that the game can play differently depending on the environment. I don’t think this is unique to baseball, but it’s most evident in baseball, where a game in old Coors Field would be very different from a game in recent Petco Park. All decent analysis has to take park factors into account. Otherwise, you’re just leaving way too much off the table.

That concludes the links portion of this post. As Glenn alluded to in his final Sabersphere, the direction of this feature will be changing a little bit, as it will now include responses to the article throughout the day, as well as another segment that you will see in a second. The goal is not to stop doing what Glenn did, but to add on to it and make it even better.

First I would like to ask that anyone who knows of a lesser-known blog that someone else (or themselves) writes, please either drop a comment, send me an email ( with the subject line "Sabersphere Recommendation," or tweet the link to @BtBScore.

The goal is for this to be a collection of the best sabermetric articles written each day, and that includes smaller blogs. If you want people to read what you're writing, this is your chance.

So now for that new segment I promised: BtB Retro. We will take a look at an older Beyond the Box Score article each day, with today's being the first ever written at Beyond the Box Score. When this article was written, the Red Sox had yet to win a World Series, Moneyball was roughly a year old, and BtB was still called "Baseball Rants."

Marc Normandin talks about the NL Wild Card Race (9/19/04):

Note: Scroll to the bottom, as it as an older link I could not directly link to the first article.

This is my first blog at this site, so I thought I should take on an interesting current topic (even though I am sure no one will stumble upon it until it is ancient history.) The NL Wild Card race is the only exciting race left in baseball this year, as the Cardinals clinched last night, the Dodgers and Giants are close (but not that close) and the Braves look like they should lock up another N.L. East Title. The link at the bottom shows the Wild Card standings as of today, or whenever it is your looking at this.